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Now it’s November!

Good morning Everyone! It is a beautiful day here in Iowa, but we could use a little rain to settle the dust. And though it is already November, today I am sharing some images from October in Utah. Here at home, most of the trees have lost their leaves.

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This scene was fairly common from the side of Burr Trail.

I have been traveling, in fact, just arrived home yesterday from a trip to beautiful Utah. I took the Amtrak train to Salt Lake City, met a photographer friend there and we rented a car to drive 4-1/2 hours to Boulder, which is in the Escalante Staircase/Dixie National Forest area. The scenery is wonderful. We also went to Bryce Canyon. None of my Bryce Canyon images are downloaded, so you won’t see those today.

The yellow of the cottonwoods (most of the Aspens had already lost their leaves) really stands out against the red canyon walls.

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Did you know there are 5 National Parks in Utah? Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capital Reef, and Zion are the 5. But wait! There is more. Bears Ears, Cedar Breaks, Dinosaur, Grand Staircase-Escalante, Hovenweep, Natural Bridges, Rainbow Bridge, and Timpanogos Cave are all National Monuments. In addition to that, there are 2 National Recreation Areas-Glen Canyon and Flaming Gorge. These are all federal lands and well worth seeing. In 6 days time I did not have time to see many of these, so a trip back to Utah is on my ‘to do’ list.

That’s not all! There are 6 National Forests, 31 National Wilderness Areas, 583 miles of National Historic Trails, 1 National Historic Site, 2 National Conservation Areas, 3 National Wildlife Refuges, 18 National Recreation Trails, and 8 National Scenic Byways.

By contrast, Iowa has 1 National Monument, 1 National Historic Site and 2 National Historic Trails. While Iowa is beautiful any time of year, it is a totally different kind of beauty.

I would say Utah is a dry climate, but where there are rivers or streams that are not dried up, you will find trees, birds and gorgeous reflections on the water’s surface.

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Of course, as a photographer, I will go at specific times of the year to try for the best images. The ones on this post are all from the same day, though at different times of the day. I haven’t had time to download the rest of my images. I even got a few bird shots in, though none are especially good. Here is one of a White-crowned Sparrow. I did add 3 species to my life list.

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The rocks are not all red, but it is the predominate color. We found a slot canyon that was simply beautiful, no less so because it was easy to get to. Some slot canyons have to be accessed by a series of ladders, which I can’t/won’t negotiate. The entrance to this canyon is not readily noticeable.

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I would suggest that if you are looking for a lovely place to visit, a place where you can see a variety of landscapes, you might want to consider Utah. Prior to this visit I had only been to Salt Lake City and the 4 corners area, but no place in between. I still haven’t been to the Great Salt Lake, nor any of the National Wildlife Refuges. Those are on the agenda for my next visit.

Of course, in October the cottonwoods are a spectacular golden color, no matter the angle from which you view them.

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That is enough to dazzle you for one day, and if, by chance, you are trying to decide where to go on your next vacation, you might want to consider Utah.

Please leave any comments below. Thanks for stopping by.

 

 

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Celebrate Weather Together

Tremendous Tuesday to everyone out there. And, it truly is tremendous, at least here in the heartland, as it RAINED this morning. Yes, RAIN! I, and everyone else in this neck of the woods am/are ecstatic, and VERY thankful. You see, we have had no rain (unless you count about one half inch total over 6 times of trying to rain) since the third week of May.  The corn is tasseled and beginning to silk, which means it will need moisture to fill those kernels. And, I don’t have to water my hostas.

Since I am doing a happy dance, my card today reflects my attitude.

front

Using Weather Together stamps and the Umbrella Weather framelits, I created a card to celebrate our good fortune.

Card cuts will be at the end of the post.

First cut the card base. I decided it would be a tent style Basic Gray base. Next is a Crushed Curry mat on which I glued a piece of light gray dotted paper which reminded me of raindrops. My art piece started as a Smokey Gray background with umbrellas, clouds and raindrops.

First I stamped in Crushed Curry on Daffodil Yellow the striped umbrella and cut it with the matching die. The long umbrella handle was cut from Basic Gray and glued directly on the gray mat, with the striped umbrella.

Then I die cut a Basic Gray and a Whisper White umbrella using the die with three sections. I cut the white one apart and glued the outside pieces to the gray umbrella, which I had stamped but wouldn’t have needed that step, leaving the center section gray. This was adhered to the mat using Stampin’ Dimensionals.

umbrella detail

The handle was stamped using the shorter, straight handle in Basic Gray ink on Basic Gray cardstock. I glued this to another piece of Basic Gray and fussy cut them together. I decided it needed to be thicker so I glued two more scraps together and glued it to my handle before fussy cutting around the original handle. Perfect. This was adhered using liquid glue.

Next, I needed clouds. Two of the large ones and one smaller one were cut from Whisper White, with one of the large ones becoming a storm cloud with a little Smokey Gray ink and Blender Pen. The white ones were liquid glued to the mat with the dark cloud adhered with Stampin’ Dimensionals overlapping the smaller one.

clouds rain detail

Using Basic Gray ink and the raindrops stamp, I stamped raindrops falling from the clouds. To dress things up a little, I die cut plain raindrops, not the heart-shaped ones, out of Silver Foil. I have to tell you that this is a tedious bit of work! Those raindrops are very tiny, easily lost, and not-so-easily glued to my card.

The Celebrate! sentiment in Basic Black from the Weather Together stamp set completed the card front.dimensionals

For the inside I stamped the 3 piece umbrella in Daffodil Yellow on a piece of Whisper White, and added a Basic Gray handle. Over this I stamped my sentiment. That sentiment is one I really like and is from Gina K. Designs. I thought it very appropriate for this card, to reflect my joy over a bit of rain. This was glued to another piece of the gray dotted paper and onto a piece of Crushed Curry. This was then glued into my card base. I wanted the inside brighter, so I made the crushed curry more dominant by cutting the dots and Whisper White pieces a bit smaller than I normally would.

inside

We really do need to be thankful for small things. I am thankful today, not only for the rain, but for each of you following this blog. Thank you very much.

The envelope got the usual patterned paper on the flap,

envelope flap

and, a Daffodil Yellow umbrella stamped on the front, along with a Smokey Slate handle and some Smokey Slate raindrops. I hope you like this card and remember to be thankful for the little things.

envelope front

If you don’t have a demonstrator and need supplies for this card, or any other, or a scrapbooking layout, I would be happy for you to click the ‘shop online with me’ button at right.

Card Cuts:

Basic Gray: Base 4-1/4″ x 11″ Scored at 5-1/2″, Umbrella, handles-scraps; Crushed Curry: Front mat 4-1/8″ x 5-3/8″, inside mat 4″ x 5-1/4″;  Daffodil Delight: Umbrella-scrap;  Smokey Gray: art piece background 3-3/4″ x 5″; Dotted Gray paper: Front mat 4″ x 5-1/4″, inside mat 3-1/2″ x 4-3/4″, envelope flap-scrap;   Whisper White

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